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(Daily Mail)   Not News: Volunteer firefighters were called out to an early morning emergency. News: At their own firehouse. Fark: It destroys the entire station   (dailymail.co.uk) divider line 39
    More: Ironic, Regional Police, volunteer firefighters  
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2360 clicks; posted to Main » on 07 Oct 2013 at 10:17 PM (45 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



39 Comments   (+0 »)
   
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest
 
2013-10-07 09:17:48 PM
thelemonspank.files.wordpress.com
Wanted for questioning
 
2013-10-07 10:21:56 PM
clearly someone's watching king of the hill reruns.
 
2013-10-07 10:24:01 PM
outpost81.com
 
2013-10-07 10:28:39 PM
70 volunteer firefighters were forced to watch the building burn down taking all six fire engines with it.

Some old saying about not keeping all your eggs in one basket comes to mind for some reason.  Hmmm, I am just not sure why I am suddenly thinking about eggs right now.

/I wonder who left the oven on
 
2013-10-07 10:35:51 PM
That happened here about 10-12 years ago.
 
2013-10-07 10:37:12 PM
thumbs.ebaystatic.com

Also wanted for questioning.

/I don't see why Pontypandy don't give Norman the ol' Wicker Man treatment, they wouldn't even need to bring their own firestarters
 
2013-10-07 10:45:45 PM
Who the hell plugged in that damn Alamo beer sign?
 
2013-10-07 10:47:16 PM
www.trouveztout.org
Wanted for questioning.
 
2013-10-07 10:51:00 PM
Sometimes good redundancy is good.
 
2013-10-07 10:52:56 PM
They were probably too busy watching porn to put out the fire.
 
2013-10-07 10:52:56 PM
If only there was some method of passive fire fighting, a system that could somehow be extended throughout the building and perhaps, what word do I want, sprinkle a fire-tamping agent-- like water, say-- to suppress the flames before they get out of control.

Alas, such a system must not exist.  If it did, after all, who better to know than fire fighters?  And who more likely to lead by example, equipping their own building with such a sprinkler systemTM*?

* I'm patenting this idea.  it's just crazy enough to work.
 
2013-10-07 10:54:06 PM
Seems like this happens about once a month.

My business sells parts for trucks, including fire trucks. We have a saying.

Nobody breaks things like firemen. You can lock a firefighter in an empty padded room with three bowling balls. Come back in 30 minutes, one bowling ball is missing, he has no idea what happened to it. The second one is broken in half, he has no idea how it happened. The third one is pregnant.

Just because the fire truck CAN go through the flood water doesn't mean it HAS to.

/I really do love dealing with fire departments, best, most fun, most cynical people in the business.

//See you at FDIC
 
2013-10-07 11:01:31 PM
I was going to make a King of the Hill reference but I see it is covered.
 
2013-10-07 11:04:27 PM
"I have a dream. It's not a big dream, it's just a little dream. My dream - and I hope you don't find this too crazy - is that I would like the people of this community to feel that if, God forbid, there were a fire, calling the fire department would actually be a wise thing to do. You can't have people, if their houses are burning down, saying, "Whatever you do, don't call the fire department!" That would be bad. "
 
2013-10-07 11:08:49 PM
It was that damned Chet Elders and his Alamo beer sign!
 
2013-10-07 11:23:21 PM

brimed03: If only there was some method of passive fire fighting, a system that could somehow be extended throughout the building and perhaps, what word do I want, sprinkle a fire-tamping agent-- like water, say-- to suppress the flames before they get out of control.

Alas, such a system must not exist.  If it did, after all, who better to know than fire fighters?  And who more likely to lead by example, equipping their own building with such a sprinkler systemTM*?

* I'm patenting this idea.  it's just crazy enough to work.


Funny thing about your crazy new idea: it won't do much for a fire in a vehicle, as none of the water will hit the fire.

When I hear about this type of fire, my first suspicion is that a fault in the charging system occured, as fire apparatus are usually plugged in while in-station. By the time enough heat to pop a sprinkler head is released, the truck is pretty well involved. Water raining down from above does nothing to control the fire because it is landing on the roof of the truck and rolling off. The radiant heat is unaffected by the water and will start adjacent vehicles on fire.

I'm not saying that this particular firehouse was or wasn't sprinklered, or that the fire definitely originated in a truck. Just that of all the things that can start a fire in a firehouse, an electrical issue in a truck is near the top of the list and that sprinklers are ineffectual in that event.
 
2013-10-07 11:32:25 PM
This is a valid use of the Ironic tag, right.  I mean, this is pretty much a textbook case of "Ironic".
 
2013-10-07 11:59:50 PM
Did they not pay the $75 fee?
 
2013-10-08 12:00:45 AM
Laugh all you want; but being that this was an all-volunteer station (meaning nobody was at the station when the fire started), what you saw was about $10 million in community funds going up in smoke. Which likely can't be replaced any time soon, since it has to come out of the county or whatever they have in Germany; and that means the area has no firefighting agency till that happens.

Which is sad.
 
2013-10-08 12:11:26 AM

lizyrd: brimed03: If only there was some method of passive fire fighting, a system that could somehow be extended throughout the building and perhaps, what word do I want, sprinkle a fire-tamping agent-- like water, say-- to suppress the flames before they get out of control.

Alas, such a system must not exist.  If it did, after all, who better to know than fire fighters?  And who more likely to lead by example, equipping their own building with such a sprinkler systemTM*?

* I'm patenting this idea.  it's just crazy enough to work.

Funny thing about your crazy new idea: it won't do much for a fire in a vehicle, as none of the water will hit the fire.

When I hear about this type of fire, my first suspicion is that a fault in the charging system occured, as fire apparatus are usually plugged in while in-station. By the time enough heat to pop a sprinkler head is released, the truck is pretty well involved. Water raining down from above does nothing to control the fire because it is landing on the roof of the truck and rolling off. The radiant heat is unaffected by the water and will start adjacent vehicles on fire.

I'm not saying that this particular firehouse was or wasn't sprinklered, or that the fire definitely originated in a truck. Just that of all the things that can start a fire in a firehouse, an electrical issue in a truck is near the top of the list and that sprinklers are ineffectual in that event.


Interesting. What gets plugged in? I mean, there's no Tesla Fire Truck Edition (yet); and GPS/nav and computers would run off the battery. So am I right to assume it's some part of the gear-- the hydraulics, the ladder system, etc? What do they do on long calls to recharge in the field?

If vehicle fires are common enough to be a prime suspect, why aren't there systems by now to contain or extinguish them? Maybe each vehicle bay should be separated by fireproof bulkheads?
 
2013-10-08 12:13:17 AM

Gyrfalcon: Laugh all you want; but being that this was an all-volunteer station (meaning nobody was at the station when the fire started), what you saw was about $10 million in community funds going up in smoke. Which likely can't be replaced any time soon, since it has to come out of the county or whatever they have in Germany; and that means the area has no firefighting agency till that happens.

Which is sad.


I'm sure it's not that bad at all.  For a while, several nearby similarly-sized or larger cities will send a truck to take care of business. So the city is covered for the short term.  Meanwhile, the German Fed will loan the city the money to buy new trucks and rebuild, and probably grant the city a big-ass chunk of cash just because that's the kind of thing Federal governments do when cities or states are farked up by things like fire or flood or quake.  That takes care of the mid-term.  Long-term, they'll make sure the fire station is not so easily burned (better alarms, different materials, sprinklers, etc.) and somebody is on site all the time.
 
2013-10-08 12:17:47 AM

lizyrd: brimed03: If only there was some method of passive fire fighting, a system that could somehow be extended throughout the building and perhaps, what word do I want, sprinkle a fire-tamping agent-- like water, say-- to suppress the flames before they get out of control.

Alas, such a system must not exist.  If it did, after all, who better to know than fire fighters?  And who more likely to lead by example, equipping their own building with such a sprinkler systemTM*?

* I'm patenting this idea.  it's just crazy enough to work.

Funny thing about your crazy new idea: it won't do much for a fire in a vehicle, as none of the water will hit the fire.

When I hear about this type of fire, my first suspicion is that a fault in the charging system occured, as fire apparatus are usually plugged in while in-station. By the time enough heat to pop a sprinkler head is released, the truck is pretty well involved. Water raining down from above does nothing to control the fire because it is landing on the roof of the truck and rolling off. The radiant heat is unaffected by the water and will start adjacent vehicles on fire.

I'm not saying that this particular firehouse was or wasn't sprinklered, or that the fire definitely originated in a truck. Just that of all the things that can start a fire in a firehouse, an electrical issue in a truck is near the top of the list and that sprinklers are ineffectual in that event.


The Kussmaul auto charge / auto eject setups (industry standard) include a battery state (temperature) monitor and master ammeter to disconnect the shore power in the event of a fault of the kind you describe. If the threshold is met, the shore power electric plug is physically ejected from the socket and the ignition protected (marine rated) master disconnect breaker is tripped. The breaker has to be ignition protected because overheating batteries exhaust flammable hydrogen gas (and other fun corrosive substances).

In the alternator types usually installed on equipment of this size, the alternator falling almost always means a 'big blow' in the rectifier, resulting in a total disconnect within the alternator rather than a small short as is sometimes seen in passenger vehicles. In any event, the auto charge system should trip the master breaker, leaving only the starter connected to the upstream side of the master breaker.

I have never seen a large frame starter fail in such a way that it could go unnoticed, because they shriek like banshees as they grind the drive to shreds against the flywheel before they over run and smash the brush rack, slinging all of the solder out of the armature. I have never seen one catch on fire, but if I was going to blame something else, the starter or the ignition switch comes to mind.

Because firefighters are pretty savvy and Kussmaul and their competitors market to firefighters, most of these safeguards are pretty standard. This is not to say that the truck is definitely not the source of ignition, just that if a setup in the class of the industry standard was installed, it is less likely to be the truck, and if it was, it is more likely a shoddy lighting wiring job or flammable material in contact with a hot exhaust part or something like that, with a final nod to the starter.

If there was some sort of wiring job done by a novice just before this fire, I would definitely point to that, but the systems are built to be fire safe and reliable and hard to break, because they're used by firemen, who as I pointed out above, break things like no one breaks things.
 
2013-10-08 12:29:17 AM

sporkme: lizyrd: brimed03: If only there was some method of passive fire fighting, a system that could somehow be extended throughout the building and perhaps, what word do I want, sprinkle a fire-tamping agent-- like water, say-- to suppress the flames before they get out of control.

Alas, such a system must not exist.  If it did, after all, who better to know than fire fighters?  And who more likely to lead by example, equipping their own building with such a sprinkler systemTM*?

* I'm patenting this idea.  it's just crazy enough to work.

Funny thing about your crazy new idea: it won't do much for a fire in a vehicle, as none of the water will hit the fire.

When I hear about this type of fire, my first suspicion is that a fault in the charging system occured, as fire apparatus are usually plugged in while in-station. By the time enough heat to pop a sprinkler head is released, the truck is pretty well involved. Water raining down from above does nothing to control the fire because it is landing on the roof of the truck and rolling off. The radiant heat is unaffected by the water and will start adjacent vehicles on fire.

I'm not saying that this particular firehouse was or wasn't sprinklered, or that the fire definitely originated in a truck. Just that of all the things that can start a fire in a firehouse, an electrical issue in a truck is near the top of the list and that sprinklers are ineffectual in that event.

The Kussmaul auto charge / auto eject setups (industry standard) include a battery state (temperature) monitor and master ammeter to disconnect the shore power in the event of a fault of the kind you describe. If the threshold is met, the shore power electric plug is physically ejected from the socket and the ignition protected (marine rated) master disconnect breaker is tripped. The breaker has to be ignition protected because overheating batteries exhaust flammable hydrogen gas (and other fun corrosive substances).

In the alternator types usually in ...


Dude, are you qualified to give me engineering credits or some kind of certification if I read that?
 
2013-10-08 12:33:22 AM

brimed03: lizyrd: brimed03: If only there was some method of passive fire fighting, a system that could somehow be extended throughout the building and perhaps, what word do I want, sprinkle a fire-tamping agent-- like water, say-- to suppress the flames before they get out of control.

Alas, such a system must not exist.  If it did, after all, who better to know than fire fighters?  And who more likely to lead by example, equipping their own building with such a sprinkler systemTM*?

* I'm patenting this idea.  it's just crazy enough to work.

Funny thing about your crazy new idea: it won't do much for a fire in a vehicle, as none of the water will hit the fire.

When I hear about this type of fire, my first suspicion is that a fault in the charging system occured, as fire apparatus are usually plugged in while in-station. By the time enough heat to pop a sprinkler head is released, the truck is pretty well involved. Water raining down from above does nothing to control the fire because it is landing on the roof of the truck and rolling off. The radiant heat is unaffected by the water and will start adjacent vehicles on fire.

I'm not saying that this particular firehouse was or wasn't sprinklered, or that the fire definitely originated in a truck. Just that of all the things that can start a fire in a firehouse, an electrical issue in a truck is near the top of the list and that sprinklers are ineffectual in that event.

Interesting. What gets plugged in? I mean, there's no Tesla Fire Truck Edition (yet); and GPS/nav and computers would run off the battery. So am I right to assume it's some part of the gear-- the hydraulics, the ladder system, etc? What do they do on long calls to recharge in the field?

If vehicle fires are common enough to be a prime suspect, why aren't there systems by now to contain or extinguish them? Maybe each vehicle bay should be separated by fireproof bulkheads?


In the bay, they plug in to mains power and an off board air compressor. When the ignition switch is triggered, the fittings are physically ejected from the receptacles on the truck. This also happens in certain fault conditions on the equipment, including battery overheat, excessive draw at rest, and air leaks. See my post above or look up Kussmaul and their competitors.

Auto eject might not be a bad idea for electric cars, or for that matter gasoline nozzles. I have seen people drive off with the nozzle, and cars with damage to their gas-holes indicative of same.
 
2013-10-08 12:35:35 AM

sporkme: lizyrd: brimed03: If only there was some method of passive fire fighting, a system that could somehow be extended throughout the building and perhaps, what word do I want, sprinkle a fire-tamping agent-- like water, say-- to suppress the flames before they get out of control.

Alas, such a system must not exist.  If it did, after all, who better to know than fire fighters?  And who more likely to lead by example, equipping their own building with such a sprinkler systemTM*?

* I'm patenting this idea.  it's just crazy enough to work.

Funny thing about your crazy new idea: it won't do much for a fire in a vehicle, as none of the water will hit the fire.

When I hear about this type of fire, my first suspicion is that a fault in the charging system occured, as fire apparatus are usually plugged in while in-station. By the time enough heat to pop a sprinkler head is released, the truck is pretty well involved. Water raining down from above does nothing to control the fire because it is landing on the roof of the truck and rolling off. The radiant heat is unaffected by the water and will start adjacent vehicles on fire.

I'm not saying that this particular firehouse was or wasn't sprinklered, or that the fire definitely originated in a truck. Just that of all the things that can start a fire in a firehouse, an electrical issue in a truck is near the top of the list and that sprinklers are ineffectual in that event.

The Kussmaul auto charge / auto eject setups (industry standard) include a battery state (temperature) monitor and master ammeter to disconnect the shore power in the event of a fault of the kind you describe. If the threshold is met, the shore power electric plug is physically ejected from the socket and the ignition protected (marine rated) master disconnect breaker is tripped. The breaker has to be ignition protected because overheating batteries exhaust flammable hydrogen gas (and other fun corrosive substances).

In the alternator types usually in ...


I had the plug from a shore line catch fire on me once.   Those things take alot of abuse, especially since the auto eject commonly breaks and people drive out with the shore line still connected.   We have short extensions (I think we call them pig tails or something) that go on the call with you if you aren't paying attention.   I had one of those make a funny sound at 0030 once after plugging it into the ambulance, then it started sparking and emitting smoke before I pulled it out.
 
2013-10-08 12:36:05 AM

Aquapope: sporkme: lizyrd: brimed03: If only there was some method of passive fire fighting, a system that could somehow be extended throughout the building and perhaps, what word do I want, sprinkle a fire-tamping agent-- like water, say-- to suppress the flames before they get out of control.

Alas, such a system must not exist.  If it did, after all, who better to know than fire fighters?  And who more likely to lead by example, equipping their own building with such a sprinkler systemTM*?

* I'm patenting this idea.  it's just crazy enough to work.

Funny thing about your crazy new idea: it won't do much for a fire in a vehicle, as none of the water will hit the fire.

When I hear about this type of fire, my first suspicion is that a fault in the charging system occured, as fire apparatus are usually plugged in while in-station. By the time enough heat to pop a sprinkler head is released, the truck is pretty well involved. Water raining down from above does nothing to control the fire because it is landing on the roof of the truck and rolling off. The radiant heat is unaffected by the water and will start adjacent vehicles on fire.

I'm not saying that this particular firehouse was or wasn't sprinklered, or that the fire definitely originated in a truck. Just that of all the things that can start a fire in a firehouse, an electrical issue in a truck is near the top of the list and that sprinklers are ineffectual in that event.

The Kussmaul auto charge / auto eject setups (industry standard) include a battery state (temperature) monitor and master ammeter to disconnect the shore power in the event of a fault of the kind you describe. If the threshold is met, the shore power electric plug is physically ejected from the socket and the ignition protected (marine rated) master disconnect breaker is tripped. The breaker has to be ignition protected because overheating batteries exhaust flammable hydrogen gas (and other fun corrosive substances).

In the alternator types usually in ...

Dude, are you qualified to give me engineering credits or some kind of certification if I read that?


No, but I did stay in a German firehouse last night.
 
2013-10-08 12:44:02 AM

brimed03: lizyrd: brimed03: If only there was some method of passive fire fighting, a system that could somehow be extended throughout the building and perhaps, what word do I want, sprinkle a fire-tamping agent-- like water, say-- to suppress the flames before they get out of control.

Alas, such a system must not exist.  If it did, after all, who better to know than fire fighters?  And who more likely to lead by example, equipping their own building with such a sprinkler systemTM*?

* I'm patenting this idea.  it's just crazy enough to work.

Funny thing about your crazy new idea: it won't do much for a fire in a vehicle, as none of the water will hit the fire.

When I hear about this type of fire, my first suspicion is that a fault in the charging system occured, as fire apparatus are usually plugged in while in-station. By the time enough heat to pop a sprinkler head is released, the truck is pretty well involved. Water raining down from above does nothing to control the fire because it is landing on the roof of the truck and rolling off. The radiant heat is unaffected by the water and will start adjacent vehicles on fire.

I'm not saying that this particular firehouse was or wasn't sprinklered, or that the fire definitely originated in a truck. Just that of all the things that can start a fire in a firehouse, an electrical issue in a truck is near the top of the list and that sprinklers are ineffectual in that event.

Interesting. What gets plugged in? I mean, there's no Tesla Fire Truck Edition (yet); and GPS/nav and computers would run off the battery. So am I right to assume it's some part of the gear-- the hydraulics, the ladder system, etc? What do they do on long calls to recharge in the field?

If vehicle fires are common enough to be a prime suspect, why aren't there systems by now to contain or extinguish them? Maybe each vehicle bay should be separated by fireproof bulkheads?


The trucks have a lot of electronic gizmos that are live when the truck is off. Portable radio chargers, laptops, thermal imaging camera charger, flashlight chargers. These devices draw from the D/C system so they work whether the truck is running or plugged in at the station. The shore power maintains the battery charge. Left off and unplugged, these devices will drain the batteries. It's also why it's fairly common for fire apparatus to idle while out of quarters rather than turn off.

I wouldn't say that these fires are common, but they do happen. My second suspicion is arson, followed by human error. All are equally likely, I just prefer to suspect the equipment before ill intent or stupidity.
 
2013-10-08 01:04:17 AM

sporkme: Aquapope: sporkme: lizyrd: brimed03: If only there was some method of passive fire fighting, a system that could somehow be extended throughout the building and perhaps, what word do I want, sprinkle a fire-tamping agent-- like water, say-- to suppress the flames before they get out of control.

Alas, such a system must not exist.  If it did, after all, who better to know than fire fighters?  And who more likely to lead by example, equipping their own building with such a sprinkler systemTM*?

* I'm patenting this idea.  it's just crazy enough to work.

Funny thing about your crazy new idea: it won't do much for a fire in a vehicle, as none of the water will hit the fire.

When I hear about this type of fire, my first suspicion is that a fault in the charging system occured, as fire apparatus are usually plugged in while in-station. By the time enough heat to pop a sprinkler head is released, the truck is pretty well involved. Water raining down from above does nothing to control the fire because it is landing on the roof of the truck and rolling off. The radiant heat is unaffected by the water and will start adjacent vehicles on fire.

I'm not saying that this particular firehouse was or wasn't sprinklered, or that the fire definitely originated in a truck. Just that of all the things that can start a fire in a firehouse, an electrical issue in a truck is near the top of the list and that sprinklers are ineffectual in that event.

The Kussmaul auto charge / auto eject setups (industry standard) include a battery state (temperature) monitor and master ammeter to disconnect the shore power in the event of a fault of the kind you describe. If the threshold is met, the shore power electric plug is physically ejected from the socket and the ignition protected (marine rated) master disconnect breaker is tripped. The breaker has to be ignition protected because overheating batteries exhaust flammable hydrogen gas (and other fun corrosive substances).

In the alternator ty ...

Dude, are you qualified to give me engineering credits or some kind of certification if I read that?

No, but I did stay in a German firehouse last night.


Every girl and many guys I've known would kill both of us to stay the night with a bunch of German firemen,(or firewomen for that matter).
 
2013-10-08 01:05:39 AM

lizyrd: brimed03: lizyrd: brimed03: If only there was some method of passive fire fighting, a system that could somehow be extended throughout the building and perhaps, what word do I want, sprinkle a fire-tamping agent-- like water, say-- to suppress the flames before they get out of control.

Alas, such a system must not exist.  If it did, after all, who better to know than fire fighters?  And who more likely to lead by example, equipping their own building with such a sprinkler systemTM*?

* I'm patenting this idea.  it's just crazy enough to work.

Funny thing about your crazy new idea: it won't do much for a fire in a vehicle, as none of the water will hit the fire.

When I hear about this type of fire, my first suspicion is that a fault in the charging system occured, as fire apparatus are usually plugged in while in-station. By the time enough heat to pop a sprinkler head is released, the truck is pretty well involved. Water raining down from above does nothing to control the fire because it is landing on the roof of the truck and rolling off. The radiant heat is unaffected by the water and will start adjacent vehicles on fire.

I'm not saying that this particular firehouse was or wasn't sprinklered, or that the fire definitely originated in a truck. Just that of all the things that can start a fire in a firehouse, an electrical issue in a truck is near the top of the list and that sprinklers are ineffectual in that event.

Interesting. What gets plugged in? I mean, there's no Tesla Fire Truck Edition (yet); and GPS/nav and computers would run off the battery. So am I right to assume it's some part of the gear-- the hydraulics, the ladder system, etc? What do they do on long calls to recharge in the field?

If vehicle fires are common enough to be a prime suspect, why aren't there systems by now to contain or extinguish them? Maybe each vehicle bay should be separated by fireproof bulkheads?

The trucks have a lot of electronic gizmos that are live when the truck is off. Portable radio chargers, laptops, thermal imaging camera charger, flashlight chargers. These devices draw from the D/C system so they work whether the truck is running or plugged in at the station. The shore power maintains the battery charge. Left off and unplugged, these devices will drain the batteries. It's also why it's fairly common for fire apparatus to idle while out of quarters rather than turn off.

I wouldn't say that these fires are common, but they do happen. My second suspicion is arson, followed by human error. All are equally likely, I just prefer to suspect the equipment before ill intent or stupidity.


Those circuits are fused, by design. Hot wire has increased resistance, the fuse or breaker blows or trips when the current exceeds the specified safety limit, whether the cause is a short or low voltage, before the wire has an opportunity to melt through insulation and short... BY DESIGN...

But no fireman has EVER monkeyed with the wiring in his equipment, scout's honor, chief, I have no idea how a toaster oven wound up in the cab on an unfused circuit and fried the $4600 inverter that powers all of our medical equipment. (true story)

My point is only that the system is inherently safe, but we always have to be on the lookout for the "better idiot" when you make something idiot-proof.

My bet is they left in a hurry and left something on the stove. Maybe a cigarette left burning in an ashtray. One of the classics burned this firehouse down. Something from a fire prevention video.
 
2013-10-08 01:12:38 AM

sporkme: lizyrd: brimed03: If only there was some method of passive fire fighting, a system that could somehow be extended throughout the building and perhaps, what word do I want, sprinkle a fire-tamping agent-- like water, say-- to suppress the flames before they get out of control.

Alas, such a system must not exist.  If it did, after all, who better to know than fire fighters?  And who more likely to lead by example, equipping their own building with such a sprinkler systemTM*?

* I'm patenting this idea.  it's just crazy enough to work.

Funny thing about your crazy new idea: it won't do much for a fire in a vehicle, as none of the water will hit the fire.

When I hear about this type of fire, my first suspicion is that a fault in the charging system occured, as fire apparatus are usually plugged in while in-station. By the time enough heat to pop a sprinkler head is released, the truck is pretty well involved. Water raining down from above does nothing to control the fire because it is landing on the roof of the truck and rolling off. The radiant heat is unaffected by the water and will start adjacent vehicles on fire.

I'm not saying that this particular firehouse was or wasn't sprinklered, or that the fire definitely originated in a truck. Just that of all the things that can start a fire in a firehouse, an electrical issue in a truck is near the top of the list and that sprinklers are ineffectual in that event.

The Kussmaul auto charge / auto eject setups (industry standard) include a battery state (temperature) monitor and master ammeter to disconnect the shore power in the event of a fault of the kind you describe. If the threshold is met, the shore power electric plug is physically ejected from the socket and the ignition protected (marine rated) master disconnect breaker is tripped. The breaker has to be ignition protected because overheating batteries exhaust flammable hydrogen gas (and other fun corrosive substances).

In the alternator types usually installed on equipment of this size, the alternator falling almost always means a 'big blow' in the rectifier, resulting in a total disconnect within the alternator rather than a small short as is sometimes seen in passenger vehicles. In any event, the auto charge system should trip the master breaker, leaving only the starter connected to the upstream side of the master breaker.

I have never seen a large frame starter fail in such a way that it could go unnoticed, because they shriek like banshees as they grind the drive to shreds against the flywheel before they over run and smash the brush rack, slinging all of the solder out of the armature. I have never seen one catch on fire, but if I was going to blame something else, the starter or the ignition switch comes to mind.

Because firefighters are pretty savvy and Kussmaul and their competitors market to firefighters, most of these safeguards are pretty standard. This is not to say that the truck is definitely not the source of ignition, just that if a setup in the class of the industry standard was installed, it is less likely to be the truck, and if it was, it is more likely a shoddy lighting wiring job or flammable material in contact with a hot exhaust part or something like that, with a final nod to the starter.

If there was some sort of wiring job done by a novice just before this fire, I would definitely point to that, but the systems are built to be fire safe and reliable and hard to break, because they're used by firemen, who as I pointed out above, break things like no one breaks things.


The Kussmaul on the rig I currently drive, 2010 Spartan cab pumper, does not auto-eject. The last rig I was assigned to, 1992 Sutphen tower, we had to watch closely because if we left it plugged in too long the batteries would start cooking. A Kussmaul on a 2007 Seagrave does something that pops the house breaker about 1/5 the time.

The things are overwhelmingly reliable and all. They just get beat up, get old, and can fail despite good design. As you say, we can break a bowling ball.

Also, although I mentioned it rather exclusively, shore power wasn't the only thing I was thinking. Some other electrical fault beyond the charging system could be a cause. Or, as I said earlier, it could have been something completely non-vehicle related.
 
2013-10-08 01:39:54 AM

lizyrd: sporkme: lizyrd: brimed03: If only there was some method of passive fire fighting, a system that could somehow be extended throughout the building and perhaps, what word do I want, sprinkle a fire-tamping agent-- like water, say-- to suppress the flames before they get out of control.

Alas, such a system must not exist.  If it did, after all, who better to know than fire fighters?  And who more likely to lead by example, equipping their own building with such a sprinkler systemTM*?

* I'm patenting this idea.  it's just crazy enough to work.

Funny thing about your crazy new idea: it won't do much for a fire in a vehicle, as none of the water will hit the fire.

When I hear about this type of fire, my first suspicion is that a fault in the charging system occured, as fire apparatus are usually plugged in while in-station. By the time enough heat to pop a sprinkler head is released, the truck is pretty well involved. Water raining down from above does nothing to control the fire because it is landing on the roof of the truck and rolling off. The radiant heat is unaffected by the water and will start adjacent vehicles on fire.

I'm not saying that this particular firehouse was or wasn't sprinklered, or that the fire definitely originated in a truck. Just that of all the things that can start a fire in a firehouse, an electrical issue in a truck is near the top of the list and that sprinklers are ineffectual in that event.

The Kussmaul auto charge / auto eject setups (industry standard) include a battery state (temperature) monitor and master ammeter to disconnect the shore power in the event of a fault of the kind you describe. If the threshold is met, the shore power electric plug is physically ejected from the socket and the ignition protected (marine rated) master disconnect breaker is tripped. The breaker has to be ignition protected because overheating batteries exhaust flammable hydrogen gas (and other fun corrosive substances).

In the alternator types usually installed on equipment of this size, the alternator falling almost always means a 'big blow' in the rectifier, resulting in a total disconnect within the alternator rather than a small short as is sometimes seen in passenger vehicles. In any event, the auto charge system should trip the master breaker, leaving only the starter connected to the upstream side of the master breaker.

I have never seen a large frame starter fail in such a way that it could go unnoticed, because they shriek like banshees as they grind the drive to shreds against the flywheel before they over run and smash the brush rack, slinging all of the solder out of the armature. I have never seen one catch on fire, but if I was going to blame something else, the starter or the ignition switch comes to mind.

Because firefighters are pretty savvy and Kussmaul and their competitors market to firefighters, most of these safeguards are pretty standard. This is not to say that the truck is definitely not the source of ignition, just that if a setup in the class of the industry standard was installed, it is less likely to be the truck, and if it was, it is more likely a shoddy lighting wiring job or flammable material in contact with a hot exhaust part or something like that, with a final nod to the starter.

If there was some sort of wiring job done by a novice just before this fire, I would definitely point to that, but the systems are built to be fire safe and reliable and hard to break, because they're used by firemen, who as I pointed out above, break things like no one breaks things.

The Kussmaul on the rig I currently drive, 2010 Spartan cab pumper, does not auto-eject. The last rig I was assigned to, 1992 Sutphen tower, we had to watch closely because if we left it plugged in too long the batteries would start cooking. A Kussmaul on a 2007 Seagrave does something that pops the house breaker about 1/5 the time.

The things are overwhelmingly reliable and all. They just get beat up, get old, and can fail despite good design. As you say, we can break a bowling ball.

Also, although I mentioned it rather exclusively, shore power wasn't the only thing I was thinking. Some other electrical fault beyond the charging system could be a cause. Or, as I said earlier, it could have been something completely non-vehicle related.


This is where theory meets practice. As a shade tree mechanic, engineering student, and professional parts man, I have been party to most stages of a component's life, but not necessarily its slow death. In my experience, Kussmaul is one of the tougher nuts to crack (or bowling balls if you prefer). "As designed" most Kussmaul setups should master disconnect all peripherals and render the truck dead even in the case of a mains fault. In practice, those designs are only ideas in the mind of an egghead who has never been near a diesel engine or the harsh environments where these trucks live, every day. My company has found that the best policy is to rely on the most... rigorous... of our customers to set a standard of reliability. If a product withstands a year in fire service, it is good for five in law enforcement and fifteen in consumer use.

We always give our firefighters a big discount, and all the bowling balls they can eat.
 
2013-10-08 01:53:02 AM

lizyrd: sporkme: lizyrd: brimed03: If only there was some method of passive fire fighting, a system that could somehow be extended throughout the building and perhaps, what word do I want, sprinkle a fire-tamping agent-- like water, say-- to suppress the flames before they get out of control.

Alas, such a system must not exist.  If it did, after all, who better to know than fire fighters?  And who more likely to lead by example, equipping their own building with such a sprinkler systemTM*?

* I'm patenting this idea.  it's just crazy enough to work.

Funny thing about your crazy new idea: it won't do much for a fire in a vehicle, as none of the water will hit the fire.

When I hear about this type of fire, my first suspicion is that a fault in the charging system occured, as fire apparatus are usually plugged in while in-station. By the time enough heat to pop a sprinkler head is released, the truck is pretty well involved. Water raining down from above does nothing to control the fire because it is landing on the roof of the truck and rolling off. The radiant heat is unaffected by the water and will start adjacent vehicles on fire.

I'm not saying that this particular firehouse was or wasn't sprinklered, or that the fire definitely originated in a truck. Just that of all the things that can start a fire in a firehouse, an electrical issue in a truck is near the top of the list and that sprinklers are ineffectual in that event.

The Kussmaul auto charge / auto eject setups (industry standard) include a battery state (temperature) monitor and master ammeter to disconnect the shore power in the event of a fault of the kind you describe. If the threshold is met, the shore power electric plug is physically ejected from the socket and the ignition protected (marine rated) master disconnect breaker is tripped. The breaker has to be ignition protected because overheating batteries exhaust flammable hydrogen gas (and other fun corrosive substances).

In the alternator types usually installed on equipment of this size, the alternator falling almost always means a 'big blow' in the rectifier, resulting in a total disconnect within the alternator rather than a small short as is sometimes seen in passenger vehicles. In any event, the auto charge system should trip the master breaker, leaving only the starter connected to the upstream side of the master breaker.

I have never seen a large frame starter fail in such a way that it could go unnoticed, because they shriek like banshees as they grind the drive to shreds against the flywheel before they over run and smash the brush rack, slinging all of the solder out of the armature. I have never seen one catch on fire, but if I was going to blame something else, the starter or the ignition switch comes to mind.

Because firefighters are pretty savvy and Kussmaul and their competitors market to firefighters, most of these safeguards are pretty standard. This is not to say that the truck is definitely not the source of ignition, just that if a setup in the class of the industry standard was installed, it is less likely to be the truck, and if it was, it is more likely a shoddy lighting wiring job or flammable material in contact with a hot exhaust part or something like that, with a final nod to the starter.

If there was some sort of wiring job done by a novice just before this fire, I would definitely point to that, but the systems are built to be fire safe and reliable and hard to break, because they're used by firemen, who as I pointed out above, break things like no one breaks things.

The Kussmaul on the rig I currently drive, 2010 Spartan cab pumper, does not auto-eject. The last rig I was assigned to, 1992 Sutphen tower, we had to watch closely because if we left it plugged in too long the batteries would start cooking. A Kussmaul on a 2007 Seagrave does something that pops the house breaker about 1/5 the time.

The things are overwhelmingly reliable and all. They just get beat up, get old, and can fail despite good design. As you say, we can break a bowling ball.

Also, although I mentioned it rather exclusively, shore power wasn't the only thing I was thinking. Some other electrical fault beyond the charging system could be a cause. Or, as I said earlier, it could have been something completely non-vehicle related.


Also if that 2010 doesn't spit out the fittings, it is probably under warranty and if not, cheap to fix. It's a basic function and kind of the point of the unit. Your local dealer should be able to handle it. I could help you, but I am probably far away from your firehouse.
 
2013-10-08 02:21:34 AM

sporkme: lizyrd: sporkme: lizyrd: brimed03: If only there was some method of passive fire fighting, a system that could somehow be extended throughout the building and perhaps, what word do I want, sprinkle a fire-tamping agent-- like water, say-- to suppress the flames before they get out of control.

Alas, such a system must not exist.  If it did, after all, who better to know than fire fighters?  And who more likely to lead by example, equipping their own building with such a sprinkler systemTM*?

* I'm patenting this idea.  it's just crazy enough to work.

Funny thing about your crazy new idea: it won't do much for a fire in a vehicle, as none of the water will hit the fire.

When I hear about this type of fire, my first suspicion is that a fault in the charging system occured, as fire apparatus are usually plugged in while in-station. By the time enough heat to pop a sprinkler head is released, the truck is pretty well involved. Water raining down from above does nothing to control the fire because it is landing on the roof of the truck and rolling off. The radiant heat is unaffected by the water and will start adjacent vehicles on fire.

I'm not saying that this particular firehouse was or wasn't sprinklered, or that the fire definitely originated in a truck. Just that of all the things that can start a fire in a firehouse, an electrical issue in a truck is near the top of the list and that sprinklers are ineffectual in that event.

The Kussmaul auto charge / auto eject setups (industry standard) include a battery state (temperature) monitor and master ammeter to disconnect the shore power in the event of a fault of the kind you describe. If the threshold is met, the shore power electric plug is physically ejected from the socket and the ignition protected (marine rated) master disconnect breaker is tripped. The breaker has to be ignition protected because overheating batteries exhaust flammable hydrogen gas (and other fun corrosive substances).

In the alternator types usually installed on equipment of this size, the alternator falling almost always means a 'big blow' in the rectifier, resulting in a total disconnect within the alternator rather than a small short as is sometimes seen in passenger vehicles. In any event, the auto charge system should trip the master breaker, leaving only the starter connected to the upstream side of the master breaker.

I have never seen a large frame starter fail in such a way that it could go unnoticed, because they shriek like banshees as they grind the drive to shreds against the flywheel before they over run and smash the brush rack, slinging all of the solder out of the armature. I have never seen one catch on fire, but if I was going to blame something else, the starter or the ignition switch comes to mind.

Because firefighters are pretty savvy and Kussmaul and their competitors market to firefighters, most of these safeguards are pretty standard. This is not to say that the truck is definitely not the source of ignition, just that if a setup in the class of the industry standard was installed, it is less likely to be the truck, and if it was, it is more likely a shoddy lighting wiring job or flammable material in contact with a hot exhaust part or something like that, with a final nod to the starter.

If there was some sort of wiring job done by a novice just before this fire, I would definitely point to that, but the systems are built to be fire safe and reliable and hard to break, because they're used by firemen, who as I pointed out above, break things like no one breaks things.

The Kussmaul on the rig I currently drive, 2010 Spartan cab pumper, does not auto-eject. The last rig I was assigned to, 1992 Sutphen tower, we had to watch closely because if we left it plugged in too long the batteries would start cooking. A Kussmaul on a 2007 Seagrave does something that pops the house breaker about 1/5 the time.

The things are overwhelmingly reliable and all. They just get beat up, get old, and can fail despite good design. As you say, we can break a bowling ball.

Also, although I mentioned it rather exclusively, shore power wasn't the only thing I was thinking. Some other electrical fault beyond the charging system could be a cause. Or, as I said earlier, it could have been something completely non-vehicle related.

Also if that 2010 doesn't spit out the fittings, it is probably under warranty and if not, cheap to fix. It's a basic function and kind of the point of the unit. Your local dealer should be able to handle it. I could help you, but I am probably far away from your firehouse.


Yeah. It's been doing it for about a month now but the city garage sucks, and the fleet director drags his feet ordering parts because he hates the fire department, and it's a low priority fix, and you guys should pull the cord out yourselves and not rely on the auto-eject. Which we do most of the time, but it's nice to have working when we forget to pull the cord. I suppose I should just be thankful that it starts.
 
2013-10-08 02:22:46 AM

strawberrylaundry: clearly someone's watching king of the hill reruns.


NOT ME, DANGNABBIT!!!!

Is this where I biatch about how they aren't on Netflix anymore?!

THIS IS A HUGE PROBLEM!!!!
 
2013-10-08 02:47:22 AM
Wow. I just learned so much about fire trucks. Five year old me just wants to hit the siren.

Thanks, pro's, for the edification!
 
2013-10-08 03:04:54 AM

Buck Henderson: strawberrylaundry: clearly someone's watching king of the hill reruns.

NOT ME, DANGNABBIT!!!!

Is this where I biatch about how they aren't on Netflix anymore?!

THIS IS A HUGE PROBLEM!!!!


King of the hill is mediocre.
 
2013-10-08 04:45:24 AM
You know, you'd THINK they'd be smart enough to build a fire house out of fire-proof materials to prevent such things from occurring.
 
2013-10-08 06:10:44 AM

khyberkitsune: You know, you'd THINK they'd be smart enough to build a fire house out of fire-proof materials to prevent such things from occurring.


Like, say, asbestos?
 
2013-10-08 06:26:50 AM
i.imgur.com
 
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